Born in France, but recently relocated to Miami, DJ/producer William Grigahcine, who goes by the name DJ Snake, has taken not just the Festival/Electronic music scene by storm, but has become a true cultural Phenom.
His world-wide #1 hit, “Turn Down For What,” a collaboration with Lil Jon, was the best-selling electronic music single of 2014, with 9 million sold/streamed worldwide and over 188 million video views, earning the clip four MTV VMA nominations, including a win for “Best Direction” and a Grammy nomination for Best Music Video in the process.
Rolling Stone raved about his genre-bending classic: “DJ Snake is perfecting his own venomous, unforgiving, primordially grooving version of bass music you can headbang to.”
DJ Snake is now working on his major label debut album to be released on Interscope/Fuzion Records later this year. Currently climbing the charts is the hit single “You Know You Like It”, his collaboration with AlunaGeorge which follows in the dance steps of “Turn Down For What,” amassing more than 20 million combined streams and 10.8 million video views on official release after he first posted it on his SoundCloud page for free two years ago to much fanfare. “You Know You Like It” has already demonstrated the ability to perform strongly at Radio, being one of the fastest moving songs on both Mainstream Top 40 and Rhythmic Top 40 charts.
Music is not just a career for the tireless auteur, but a lifestyle. After watching the 1995 French cult classic La Haine about a young Arab arrested and beaten in Paris by French policemen, sparking a riot, in his youth, Snake knew he not only wanted to make music but become a DJ. The decision came after one particular scene when DJ Cutkiller, a mentor of his, opens up his window with all of his turntables and equipment set up and starts spinning for his block amidst the rubble.
DJ Snake began his producing career in 2009 and, by 2012, received a Grammy nomination for co-producing on Lady Gaga’s Born This Way album. In 2013, he emerged as an artist in his own right with the release of “Bird Machine” featuring fellow Frenchmen Alesia, which was picked up by Diplo’s Mad Decent label. The infectious smash single combined beckoning bird calls and a smooth kick drum pattern, offering the prime example of DJ Snake’s sparking the 100 BPM trap subgenre. After the record began receiving support from fellow artists, Snake was invited to take over BBC Radio 1Xtra’s Diplo and Friends, his clean mixing and fusion of different genres along with the uptempo vibe of dance music blowing listeners away.
DJ Snake’s career took off for the stratosphere with the release of “Turn Down For What,” featuring Lil Jon, at the tail end of 2013, propelling him to unprecedented heights in the music industry, as it climbed iTunes and the Billboard charts within its first week on the streets. The
craziness of the disturbing “Turn Down For What” music video, created by DANIELS – co- directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert -- was the icing on the cake, its exploration of “male sexuality in a really weird way” (according Kwan) that immediately went viral, with artists like Skrillex and Katy Perry singing its praises.
“Turn Down For What” was voted by Rolling Stone the second best of the year in 2014, calling it “The year’s nutsiest party jam was also the perfect protest banger for a generation fed up with everything. DJ Snake brings the synapse-ratting EDM and Southern trap music. Lil Jon brings the dragonfire holler for a hilarious, glorious, glowtick-punk fuck you.” The song was voted #9 in this year’s Village Voice’s annual Pazz & Jop poll, eventually going five-times platinum, spurring a global movement.
DJ Snake shows no signs of slowing down in 2015. The first single from Major Lazer’s new album,” Lean On,” was a collaboration between DJ Snake and Diplo, with Snake bringing his signature sound that seamlessly merged his various musical influences to create the most electrifying incantation of the new French touch, enhancing Internet it-girl and next big pop star, MØ. True to the sounds of the past releases, this Major Lazer and DJ Snake collaboration is both an iconic dance floor anthem and a power pop song that sits just as comfortably in the Top 40 world as it does in the dancehall clubs of Jamaica.
For the second year in a row, DJ Snake has returned to the turntables for the Wynn in Las Vegas, is set to play Coachella for the first time as well as headline the Ultra Music Festival in Miami, which will coincide with his own major label debut on Interscope/Fuzion.